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Music News Recap: Soundcloud Signs UMG, SFXE Gets Another Lifeline, iTunes Radio Goes Paid

Posted by Glen Sears | January 19, 2016 10:47 am | No Comments

Soundcloud Universal Music Group MediaNet

Story of the Week

Soundcloud Strikes Licensing Deal With Universal Music Group
The agreement covers SoundCloud’s planned expansion of advertising on its free service, which has 175 million monthly listeners, as well as its plans to introduce subscription services in the US and other markets later this year.

“At UMG, we have long ­embraced empowering entrepreneurs and innovative services such as SoundCloud,” said Universal chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge, in a statement. “With this partnership, we’re ensuring recording artists, songwriters and labels benefit, both creatively and commercially, from the exciting new forms of music community engagement on SoundCloud. We look forward to working with SoundCloud and supporting the company’s evolution into a successful commercial service.”

SoundCloud now has deals with Universal and Warner; with indie-labels licensing agency Merlin; with the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) in the US and with PRS for Music in the UK – having settled the latter’s recent copyright infringement lawsuit. The Universal deal, like those other agreements, covers tracks added to SoundCloud by labels and artists, but also user-generated content: remixes and mash-ups, which have been both one of the key attractions of SoundCloud for music fans, and one of its biggest headaches from a copyright perspective.

Read more on Music Ally

Top News Stories

YouTube Launches in Pakistan, Where It Is Banned. The launch is seen as a positive step in lifting the blockade, put in place after the emergence of an American-made video that depicted the Prophet Mohammed in a negative light.

Apple Will Start Charging for iTunes Radio. The Pandora-like online radio service will only be available for Apple Music paid subscribers paying $9.99 per month, the company said in a statement.

SFX’s Bumpy Ride Continues With $20 Million in New Financing. The troubled EDM promoter, having just defaulted on a loan, revealed Friday it raised $20 million “for itself and certain of its operating subsidiaries.”

The Spotify/Genius Deal Has Potential. Stuart Dredge claims the partnership for displaying contextual content for songs “may be a gimmick that gets quietly forgotten by 2017, but the potential is there for it to be more.”

Labels Still Don’t Get YouTube. Analyst Mark Mulligan says the consumption of music on YouTube has seen incredible growth, but if labels don’t update how they’re using the platform, they risk of being edged out by YouTube’s native content creators.

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Apple Music Becomes the 2nd Largest Digital Music Service, and Last Week’s Top News

Posted by Glen Sears | October 26, 2015 1:51 pm | No Comments

apple music youtube red tim cook

Story of the Week

Apple Music, YouTube Red Mark a Momentous Week for Digital Music
The week of October 19 is the week digital music met its future. Long dominated by early entrants and standalone companies, the music subscription market was rocked by the world’s two largest technology companies, Apple and Google.

Monday’s news that Apple Music has 6.5 million subscribers and Wednesday’s unveiling of YouTube Red, the company’s upcoming subscription service, are two hugely important steps in helping, or properly enticing, consumers to make the transition from buying music to streaming for free to paying a monthly fee to access — but not own outright — a large collection of audio tracks and videos. If the jump from cassettes to CDs crossed over a hurdle, going from downloads to paid streaming requires scaling a 10-foot wall.

Read more on Billboard: http://bit.ly/1NwNsbD

Top News Stories

Pandora Stock Falls 36% Friday As Investors Lose Faith – Investors reacted poorly to another bad earnings report and slowing listener growth amidst increased competition. The company reported a third quarter loss of $85 million or 40 cents a share. Read More
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Spotify U.K. No Longer Profitable, and Last Week’s Top News

Posted by Glen Sears | October 19, 2015 10:39 am | No Comments

spotify no longer profitable medianet soundcheck

Story of the Week

Spotify U.K. Subscription Revenues Climb as Overall Profits Fall
The U.K. arm of Spotify experienced strong growth in its subscription and advertising revenues last year, but still posted a £1.2 million ($1.5 million) loss after taxation, according to the company’s latest set of financial results, which cover the year 2014.

The rise in sales was not enough, however, to prevent the London-based company reporting an overall loss for the year after taxation of £1.2 million ($1.5 million) — a significant slide when compared to the previous calendar year when Spotify recorded a profit of £2.6 million ($4 million).

The loss can be partially attributed to a sizeable rise in cost of sales — a category that includes royalties paid to labels and publishers — which jumped from £96.2 million ($148 million) in 2013 to £124.4 million ($191.7 million) last year. “Individual company reports are not necessarily a reflection of the whole company, one way or the other,” a Spotify spokesperson maintained in a statement provided to Billboard.

Read more on Billboard: http://bit.ly/1GeFiF5

Top Stories

Condé Nast Buys Pitchfork – Confirming the buy, which includes all Pitchfork ventures, so the spin-off live events too, Condé Nast’s newly appointed big cheese Bob Sauerberg told reporters: “Pitchfork is a distinguished digital property that brings a strong editorial voice, an enthusiastic and young audience, a growing video platform and a thriving events business. We look forward to bringing Pitchfork to the network of best-in-class brands of Condé Nast”. Read More

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PRS for Music Sues Soundcloud, and SFXE on the Brink of Bankruptcy [Soundcheck]

Posted by Glen Sears | August 31, 2015 11:06 am | No Comments

soundcloud prs lawsuit

Story of the Week

PRS Music Sues Soundcloud After “5 Years Of Unsuccessful Negotiations.”
Read More: http://bit.ly/1KXvSJU
“Dear Member,

After careful consideration, and following five years of unsuccessful negotiations, we now find ourselves in a situation where we have no alternative but to commence legal proceedings against the online music service SoundCloud.

When a writer or publisher becomes a member of the Performing Right Society, they assign certain rights to their works over for us to administer, so it’s our job to ensure we collect and distribute royalties due to them. SoundCloud actively promotes and shares music. (more…)

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